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Tsa 45, Us 26, America 10, At&t 10, Mr. Rojas 7, Illinois 6, Madigan 5, Mr. Mccormick 5, Mr. Reese 4, Vermont 3, Georgia 3, U.s. 3, Atlanta 3, Ayotte 3, Jackson Lee 3, Ms. Eppley 2, Mr. Mccormck 2, Sheila Jackson Lee 2, Texas 2, John 2,
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  CSPAN    U.S. Senate    News/Business.  

    July 15, 2011
    5:00 - 7:00pm EDT  

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fourth level of protection involves monitoring an audit and suspension of service providers. these measures taken together can have dramatic results. one of our companies reported having achieved an 89% reduction since january of 2010. nevertheless, mr. chairman, as the hearing demonstrates, the problem of cramming persists. :
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we wrote immediately and then come right back. it should be no more than 15 minutes. can you live that? alright. i i will. attorney general madigan, the word was used by mr. mccormck, the word convenience and i'm very fond of that word because i've been trying to -- i am a student of oriental languages and even then buddhism and i am trying to figure out what the word convenience means because it's frequently used by the telephone companies. look, you've brought your devices against companies.
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one of your recent cases on september you fight against a california company called a.d. lifeguards in this company charged more than 5000 of your illinois citizens $12.95 a month for a so-called identity protection service. but when your office contacted these consumers can be told she did never authorized the charges commented that the charges had gone on their phone bill, didn't know how and that's correct, is it not? >> that is correct, mr. chairman. >> did any -- you know, we found hundreds of companies like this this -- and where does the word convenience -- the telephone companies the word convenience. the user what they were talking about will fix it ourselves. they use it now. how has this become a convenience? >> mr. chairman, i think the only people who would describe
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third-party charges being crammed on phone bills as a convenience might be the carriers, the aggregators in the vendors i think as ms. eppley testified. it is not a convenience. it is an enormous and expensive hassle for individuals and businesses and government agencies who are constantly having to be aware of the fact it may be cramped and go through a very tight in the process to have been moved. we have found when consumers have tried to remove these charges by contacting their care, they are given the runaround. they are told they can't do anything about it. they'll have to contact the vendor. this had nothing to do with the service on the charge being put there in the first place. and then there's eppley went through the experience she went through as a consumers we've talked to. so to give you just a little more detail in terms of our
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process against i.d. lifeguards, there is a 56% refund rate. 56%. so in other words, of the 5000 plus consumers in the state of illinois who were crammed, they had it removed from their filter that is a clear indication it is outright fraud been engaged in. part of the protection service i recall as they were to be receiving a copy of their credit report. no individuals we talked to had ever received a copy of their credit report. still understand there is no convenience. it is a terrible inconvenience. -- is the reality. >> i think you are right. let me call a 15 minute recess and will be right back. thank you. [inaudible conversations] [inaudible conversations]
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>> attorney general madigan, let me just finish up my question with you i am fascinated and i want mr. mccormck to enter this to. the largest telephone companies as their search. imagine if we started going elsewhere how much we'd find. state government, federal government. why did they do that. these are huge companies. they make some money from it, yeah, but hopefully they're going to get a lot of bad will the city and embarrassment about it. they made us a promise. they broke that promise and i don't know whether the ceo that i had in my office yesterday, whether he knew about it or not. i don't think he did. so that's the big corporate structure and there's always the middle people, but they
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eventually everything is money on on account, on a report and companies are responsible for what they do. why do they do this? >> well, mr. chairman, mr. graham next response will be enlightening. we wouldn't disagree with the perspective of what we've seen from consumers. there's an obvious financial opportunity for the carriers because they are receiving a portion of those charges that ultimately end up on dean consumer's phone bills. >> not that much. >> not that much, but this has been going on over 15 years. over that period of time, it adds up to some money. what we need to look at is the fact that landline service is a declining surveys and many people are now relying solely on their wireless carriers to provide them with their phone
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service. and though, and maybe the dad here is one of our last opportunities to bring some money. i don't think that's the proper way to look at it from a business to, but that's really all that we can come up with in terms of why they allow this to go on because consumers are absolutely furious as i stated an i think others have as well on the piano. people are unaware this is used as a credit card. i talked to my husband last night, said the husband who admittedly is not a lawyer, doesn't delve into days and i explained to him what we were talking about today. he said i had no idea that could be done. and so, you know, the husband of the illinois attorney general doesn't realize her phone number can be used as a credit card, i can argue very few to nobody understands that in this country. >> senator ayotte and i were talking when they went over to
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vote that i don't remember an example of what may telephone number becomes the same as a credit card. it could be used as a credit card. you know such an instance? >> no, we don't know any other instances of this. and truly consumers don't realize that commotion is why the vast majority never even find these unauthorized charges on their phone bills. >> here is one of the typical of at&t. it's five pages long and is cut very small print. and in fact, even with my recently corrective glasses, i have to really look hard to find down here, which is the program of usb eye. it doesn't say what they're doing. they have a telephone number. i've no idea what 188 plus seven other numbers will get you. what they have to pay is $19.95 in the have to do it every
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month. and then there's more stuff after page five. who goes through this? you do, ms. eppley because you're an accountant, but here is some more on the back. who goes through this? >> almost nobody. mr. chairman -- >> isn't the point that they shouldn't have to go through? i mean, there shouldn't be the dow, the suspicion that i'm about to be had for will go through every single line on this telephone bill, particularly from huge companies like that could make hundreds of millions of dollars. mr. mccormick, how do you answer that? you promise to take care of the problem on a voluntary basis. in such strong language that we unfortunately for us, to our embarrassment accepted that and now we're in the mess that we are in nothing has changed. why do companies do this?
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>> mr. chairman, i am aware of that commitment that was made in the late 1990s and as i began my testimony today, we agree that this is a continuing problem and that it needs to be addressed and we went to work with you on it. you've asked about -- >> no, that's not the question i asked, is it? we want to continue to work and i'm aware of the problem. that's more or less what you said 10 years ago. in stronger language. what i've said is, why did they do it? why does a company as large as at&t's, you know, pepsico, a whole lot of people on that list that jesus and that get this money. why did they do it? i don't understand. it's bad for publicity. it skimming, called cramming in, or it is really scamming.
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>> mr. chairman, i can share with the web that companies have told me when i've asked that very question, which is the system began with the federal requirements that it was coupled with state requirements in various states around the country. but it is even unclear today whether or not the industry has the ability in every state could no longer engage in this business and i believe the staff report that you release this morning indicates that there is some uncertainty in that area. >> okay, let's say there is some uncertainty. why would they -- i'm not willing to stipulate, but why would a telephone company take the chance? i mean, to most there doesn't seem to be about question. it's illegal. it's from.
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they don't make that much from it they don't make that much from it. >> correct. >> why haven't you cleaned up your act? why haven't they just had to stop it from the ceo right on down? just an e-mail to about 30 mid-level people. stop it. stop doing it, except for the authorized charges. >> i don't know the answer to that question other than to reinforce what i mentioned a moment ago about the fact that it began as a federal requirement. and again, you know, the industry has taken his mythic status, the report he issued today indicates that there has been improvement, but it remains a very, very significant pervasive problem in the real challenge, as you indicate once you identify a that they come back in a different disguise. it is a very significant challenge.
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>> all right. senator ayotte. >> thank you very much, mr. chairman. wanted to follow up with attorney general madigan. could you help me a little bit in terms of, what are the current laws and penalties in place to address grammy cramming three prosecution route? you know, i think about when somebody steals from the convenience store we generally shut down the store. we go after the peace. and so when you say to ban all third party, i just want to understand what the difficulties are and why that should be the route versus some other route. >> scheuer. >> we want to ban third-party charges on phone bills because we have yet to see anything legitimate in terms of the products or services. people are obviously unaware.
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and it shouldn't be though of responsibility to play whack a mole. you've heard people testified that there should be about enforcement action that ultimately results in the vendor being kicked off the carriers billing platform. but they simply reappear with another name and are engaging in the exact same activities, so much so that there's actually an entity that we filed a lawsuit against twice because they got rid of that month in the reappear doing almost exactly the same thing. so it is unreasonable, i would argue, that it requires state-level law enforcement, federal level law enforcement to constantly be going after someone that is clearly deception and fraud. we end up using our consumer protection act to go after the vendors. and again, would we end up going
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after folks, recognized these are the people who have the wherewithal to eventually contact the attorney general's office. the vast majority of people, if they ever become aware of these charges will call their carrier. very few of them make it to last. and so, at the end of the day you have to say well, if we are getting, you know, five complaints about one company, frequently by the time we start the investigation, they've moved on because we know they are engaged in fraud and they know if there is a significantly higher refund rate, there's a chance they will be or not the billing platform. so they are clever in a sense they are they are constantly reconstituting changing their name, type of service they're providing, hiding it under different line on these phone bills. so i would liken it to whack a mole. you've heard that analogy before, but this is a serious situation that is costing individuals and businesses and government agencies to get amounts of money every single
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year. >> and as a follow-up on the federal land, you said you've been working with the ftc. >> the ftc is at workshops and obviously been engaged in this over the years. >> they are also able to pursue the creamers under federal law? >> i know they have had significant actions. >> one of the issues obviously would also be interested in looking not is making sure that the tools on a law law-enforcement man, that they have the tools they need to go after the bad act varies. i wanted to follow up with mr. burg to ask you. you said raman originally had a statute in place that was ineffective. and why wasn't the notice -- how did that work when the notice -- why did it fail in your view? to note is the first on third
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party building? >> senator, i think the notice required mayfield because of the extremely low level of understanding and the public about how local phone bills can be used as a way of charging people for unrelated goods and services. so you're not going to open the letter that comes from the vendors. that looks like a piece of junk mail because why would you. you're not going to scrutinize your phone bill because it is your phone bill and you're being charged for your phone service. isn't that correct? but not correct because there'll be something on there that's unrelated to your phone bill. we have been working for decades to try to get people to scrutinize credit card account statements, where you can be charged for lots of unrelated things. and that has even been difficult as this committee knows from that data passed discussions of last year and the year before. here, the phone bill is so far
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afield of normal payment mechanisms for general goods and services that people are not looking they are. and so, this is one of the reasons why you have a huge disparity between the number of complaints that are filed in the number of victims that you have, which is sort of, to have that complaint case is a prerequisite to the enforcement action, but we find very few complaints and a huge number of victims. again, not surprising in light of the low level of consumer understanding. >> when these notices were sent, assuming that there's many bad actors that are participating, i assumed they would, under your prior law, they would have to send these notices to consumers in the third-party billing. that's one thing i'm not clear on. if you're a bad actor -- today then send the notices? >> i mean, in our experience, many vendors that have a veneer
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of legitimacy, who would respond to subpoenas to the sandow, who will say, yes, we got consent from everybody that we charged, but in fact, there is no way of determining that if it is an online sign-up, for example, there's no way of telling dictated that was used to charge somebody on their phone bill came from the consumer or came from a data file that was the team did some other way without any involvement of the consumer. so the prior law requires the sender's dissent a freestanding notice through the mail to consumers. many of the vendors said, well, we didn't send a letter to the mail, but we are notice on their website so when the consumers signed up, the consumer knew he or she was going to be built on the local phone bill. but there is no way of telling if the consumers signed up. when we did our survey and this is not coupled with any promise of refunds or anything. i think people in our state tend
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to be pretty straightforward when they are responding to this kind of inquiry. we had just the vast majority of people saying, i don't know what you're talking about. i didn't get consent. i should not have been built. >> thank you. mr. mccormack, i want to follow up to ask you. you have set in your testimony, that with respect to third-party billing, that he was paired parties and consumers. can you provide us further information of how it is valuable? and if we were to ban the davis, what are your concerns about the consequences of their? because general madigan just said she has had an experiment where there've been legitimate charges. i'm trying to understand if you can help me, which her perspective is on any value to the consumer? >> well, we would absolutely grates absolutely not convenient
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to have an unauthorized charge but on your phone bill. in the case of vermont, mr. burke testified that although vermont burned to the third-party building, even there were certain exceptions for us believe there was convenient for the consumer to be able to have certain services aggregated on a single bill. so any kind of examination in this area i think would require some broad understanding of what legitimate businesses to rely upon the third-party billing says both competitive opportunity and a consumer convenience we can train provide you with more information for the record. >> i would appreciate that because i think it's important for us to understand if there is, you know, some legitimate purpose what that would be of good examples are given the experience we've heard about here for general madigan.
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thank you. >> senator mccaskill. >> thank you, mr. chairman. welcome to you. i would like to place in the record, mr. chairman, a letter to committee received from a company that is based in my state, o'reilly auto parts. it is quite a tale. for 10 years, when they began realizing that they were being but demised by extensive creaming began hiring people full time to do nothing but monitor their billions. they now have three full-time employees that do nothing but monitor billions. and the experiences they've had with at&t and others who frankly are outrageous, how difficult it is bad for them to curb this practice. they now estimate that 10 years they have been tracking that, over $200,000 of aliens has been tried -- have been attempted against their company.
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they acquired another company a few years ago and they have done the work on that company. they think they have lost $300,000. so $550,000 worth of cramming over a ten-year period. they are victimized because their numbers are available to the public. and it's the small businesses and various new numbers where these companies obvious they are just feasting fraudulently on small businesses. they spent $400,000 on their staff to do this over the ten-year period. but they have 150 grand or so if they look at what they've tried to do. most companies don't do this. most companies try db2 database they can. let me turn to you, mr. mccormick. i know you are in an awkward position because my wrath is going to probably directed towards you. but we know each other in a nice person and i don't mean to pick
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on you today. i need to know how much money the phone companies are making on this. they are making a boatload of money or they would not put up with this. bear in mind these people to use platforms to build because they are getting a piece of the pie. i need to know how much did at&t make last year on cramming? >> i've been told it's about one 10th of 1% of overall industry revenues. >> that doesn't tell me how much it weighs because i don't know how much money at&t is making. >> i would have to provide you for the exact figure for the record, but i believe based on what i've learned that their revenues from third-party billing amount to about 50 million a year. >> okay, the total industry is making 50 million year off of it? >> i would be at&t. >> that sounds like the money to me. >> $50 million for third-party
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billing. i'm not saying they make $50 billion off of cramming. they make $50 million of these off of performing third party billing and this is somewhat less than an estimated 200 million the overall would represent about one 10th of 1% of industry revenues. >> it sounds like to me that either you take the position of demanding i spend a good reputation of these companies are being maligned in a way that they would consider to be an appropriate or at a significant money and they are willing to bear the burden of this bad is going on because ultimately it's the consumers out there fighting for their life and every $1.50 they see in their phone bill. let me ask you this. my credit card is used. there is a lack of hoops that i'm expect you to jump through to use my credit card online. i have to have the right lane
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entrance and they have the ability to match up, whether or not the billing address is correct. there is a pin number on my credit card that i have to use that tells the company that i have the credit card in my possession. why don't the phone companies require these third-party builders to get that kind of identification from these people? >> senator, the companies have contracts with third-party aggregators that require the aggregator not only to authenticate the service provider, but require the service provider to provide authentication of the authorization of the charge. those contractual commitments are in place. the telephone companies actually bought it. but nevertheless, this remains a very significant problem is the committee staff reports after
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3 million pages of evidence, it's very difficult to tell what are and are not authorized to charges. >> there's another requirement that the company wants to bill you get a self identifying number. there is nothing now for that. if somebody calls my house and my grandchild answers the phone and they say, do you want to spend $2 a month to get tv listings in your area delivered to your internet account or whatever and my grandson just hangs up the phone, they could start doing that because they can say they've caught and somehow they aren't authorized. that's what they're doing. some of them don't even bother to call. what of the phone companies say, you have to produce from the person that authorizes these services. they have to produce to you a pin number that has to match. >> that may be a very good idea.
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it is my understanding the way in which they require authentication today is through three specific methods. one is through actual recording of the individual and may authorize the service. number two, on the internet and number three through welcome packages that have been accepted. they do not use pin numbers like they do with credit cards, but they do have industry standards with regard to authentication. >> well, i think if two of those three are very easy to do fraudulently. and the o'reilly folks tell me that listed some of the recordings and they are not as legit as some of the rhetoric flying around the capital right now. you know, i don't think that the recordings are even foolproof. it seems to me this is a simple way. obviously worked for credit
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card. what you do is if you got a phone line, you would get a 10 minute period they would have to be able to produce a pin number. and i know i have not given a pin number out on anything unless it is something that i want. seems to me that would clean it up pretty quickly and you all could do that on your own without the government getting involved. would you mind taking a two-year association of finding out what the problem with the to get done so that penumbra have to be used if somebody wanted a third party billing? >> i absolutely will. >> that's great. how many third-party vendors have been disqualified and this'll be my last question. i know over time. how many third-party vendors to you at at&t disqualified for missing their a customer's phone numbers? >> i don't have a specific number. >> i'd like to know how many third-party vendors.
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i know they have the most resources to infect cut this down and some parts of the country they still can't walk with at&t. so i would like to find out for at&t how many third-party vendors they have total and how many they've disqualified annually for the last five years. thank you very much. thank you, mr. chairman. >> thank you, senator. >> i'll defer to senator udall. >> are you sure? actually, go ahead. >> thank you, senator bluesman and senator rockefeller, thank you went again. you are staring us in the right direction in terms of consumer protection and focusing on this and i very much appreciate the fact that you have an attorney
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general. i know that senator ayotte was very aggressive interstate and i know the both of you are very aggressive in terms of stopping these kinds of scams. and we very much appreciate your presence because they think you bring a very important perspectives. and i understand from your testimonies that almost all consumers who were crammed were unaware of the charges and did not want to use the uppercase services. i think you both recommend the prohibition of third-party churches to landline phones. the other concern that i have and when we get the innovation in the uses and have the self is going is looking at cell phones in looking at what's happening there. and i wonder, do you have any
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recommendations on how to prevent in which we talk about a lot sunland by a $2 billion or more. what can we do as far as cell phones affecting third-party billing on cell phones? what is your recommendation. >> first of all, let me give you perspective on the overall complaints. according to sec data, it appears about 82% of the complaints regarding landmines, 16% of them are wireless lines. in the state of illinois, the attorney general's office we've seen very few complaints regarding wireless lines. i believe wireless carriers are much more vigilant and intolerant of third-party billing. and they maintain -- again, i
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would pose if you cannot opportunity you would prevent the fraud for migrating from the lamplight hills to the wireless bills. many people at this point are starting to rely exclusively on wireless service as opposed to landline surveys and has the opportunity. >> senator, the one that i have is i think it's important to look at the issue of consumer expectations and whether in terms of how you can be built and for what ntc the expectations are the same in the wireless environment in the landline attorney. because of the availability the apps and talents can be willed
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to your wireless account that people expect can be built in that way in an outright prohibition would not be the right way to go. their other options. you could have a blocking system. it could be an automatic lock when you open wireless account and then you opt-out of that, which would protect the broad public and those people who want to be billed for a whole range of things from their cell phone accounts. they can do that. >> to any other panels have thoughts on this issue that every steer? >> related to wireless, senator. >> yeah, our company has a service that now come which allows people to upload a phone bill and detect the third-party charges and we are seeing an increase on the wireless side. it is nowhere near the problem yet, but due to the legitimacy of many third-party charges on wireless bills, apps, movies,
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songs, et cetera, et cetera. for smart devices that will be a tough challenge to determine what is legitimate and illegitimate. we do that. based on actual hard research of every line item charge so they can then catalogued the bad ones cataloged our customers about it. but a broad prohibition will be difficult, but it's coming and it's going to get much worse on wireless and i don't think any legislation is going to affect wireless actually. >> ms. eppley. >> thank you, mr. chairman. i has to put me statement to the record. >> absolutely. >> thank you. >> i really don't have any questions, mr. chairman. we appreciate you having the ranking member be here and participating. this is a problem that i think will continue to grow we have
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somebody call and say, would you like to increase your sales and visibility for your country. she said he has come in very like to do that. she took to get the recording academy has had very much like to do that and then use that as a justification to add about $100 a month is very substantial. so i think they are just all of these areas and certainly wireless is important. i'd ink in arkansas, where 70% wireless at this point, something like that, something very germanic. so as you see that, especially with young people, they don't have land lines. so it really does help put together and i think it's important that we discuss it. we've got a lot of differences in opinion and the panel is excellent. we appreciate your being here
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and sharing your insights and all of you been on the frontlines. i know that the law enforcement -- they don't want to see it happen. i know are companies still want to see it happen also. the key is, how do you do it in a reasonable way? so thanks again, mr. chairman. >> thank you, senator. it is interesting to me. we have to wind up. it is interesting to me that at&t itself has been crammed some 80 times. i guess my question to you, mr. mccormick, is -- i mean, there is total agreement on this panel except for you and you're trying to slide it off as
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happens. but if at&t itself has been crammed 80 times and they probably don't know about it, but on the other hand, how could they not know about it because they have really good auditors, bill counters and bean counters and are bound to find it. why don't we just take a simple thing and put all of our agony and somehow protect authorized charges and just get rid of all the rest. why wouldn't we do that? >> millions of sleepless hours for millions of season eppley's. why go through all of the tomfoolery of hedging bets there is this. what really is clear eyed to be just as the telephone companies we've done.
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and we're going to persist on this because that's what we do here. we protect consumers. we protect consumers. why wouldn't we just ban not so we wouldn't have to compromise yourself so much as a witness. >> mr. chairman, with some limited exceptions the industry supported the legislation. the business of third-party billing represents, as i said less than one 10th of 1%. >> i don't care. the point is it doesn't to suzanne eppley and hundreds of thousands of other citizens across the united states. every single year for years and years in years and years. so don't get me what it represents one half of 1%. that is the corporate point of view. so why do you use that?
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why do you think about haircuts rather than about the one half of 1%, which i don't necessarily agree with. why not danette. the indiana erased billions. give america a reason to wake up with a smile. and on the others were investigating, to. why not? >> mr. chairman, we do ban on authorized billings with regard to a third-party billings whatsoever that something is a policy all explored the industry if that is something the industry would like to support. >> i will turn to the senator to as the final question and then i'll have a closing statement in the last 15 seconds. >> thank you, mr. chairman. just as a follow-up, i certainly
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appreciate mr. mccormick, but you will seek the industry and i look forward to your supplement to the question that i yeah so we can have a full understanding of if we were to go a policy direction, what would be the full consequences of doing so for consumers as well as businesses. i appreciate that. attorney general madigan, as they understand it, illinois passed a law in 2009, which doesn't have a complete ban on third party billing. so you can help us understand you are here asking us to understand what hasn't worked and you're allowed and what has brought you to this position today. >> senator, as i mentioned, when we brought our lawsuits, all three of them we used our fraud act, even though the new law has been passed. we have yet to use it.
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the reason we are here today as we would like to be more like vermont because vermont has been successful in being able to pass a ban and it is insane that we have to spend countless hours in the slightly similar way to what they've eppley does, we take in hundreds of complaints. we filed a lawsuit eventually after we do a thorough investigation and then we get restitution for many of those consumers, but not nearly all of those consumers. what we have seen repeatedly in what you've heard everyone testified to today is consumers don't know that their phone bill can be used like a credit card account. consumers end up with services and products on their phone bill they never asked for and ultimately because they never asked for them, they never knew they were paying for them and never use them. way to eliminate that without having to go through the heroic efforts of those people on this panel is to simply ban the
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third-party charges. and yes, there are some exceptions. you know, operator assistance, diet and services, certain things that everybody knows what those exceptions are. those are individual consumers or businesses to be put on the bill is not some secret history that ends at the crammed onto their bill when all they can do is put their names, address and telephone number into an online solicitation to get coupons and that seems to be the way people on the internet and have been charged for these things. if they were on the internet at all, if it wasn't just outright fraud. because of the abnormal is fraud and deception, that i would say is the entire industry here, should just be banned outright. and as one final follow-up to mr. mccormick, if you are having is an industry to basically file a whole host of different law says this area is
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so you've got to follow the law that illinois passed. i assume this is what you're dealing with. you don't have preemption in this area. what -- if we are looking at a solution here -- whatever our solution would be that this committee comes up to, what is the industry's view in terms of having a federal -- one federal standard whether it's the beginning of third-party or some other solution, you know, senator mccaskill raised when here. what is your perspective i'm not? >> senator, this is a national business and these issues have. we really have been looking to the fcc is the principal regulatory agency. so it's a great benefit to industry to have a single nationwide.
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>> i have to ask the attorney generals here if you have any preemption concerns here for come up with a solution. >> we always have preemption concerns and i think there is somebody who kindly mention the fact that you would want to make sure that while the federal regulators have authority to do whatever they needed to do against cramming, that the states are not stripped of that because we find when the solution is on at the federal level and the states are preempted, it often times is not strong enough for us to contend states. >> thank you. >> by me just close with a couple things. one, thank you all of you very much. for being here on what i think is a classic american problem.
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i mean, we're not talking about the war in afghanistan, we're not talking about raising the debt ceiling. i grant that. but we are talking about something, which is profoundly troubling and disturbing to millions of americans. and it's also necessary. i mean, i thought we were going to do was clear problems here. and 10 years ago the telephone entity came to us two essences for clear problems because they make us look bad if we don't end there you can trust us to do it and they did it. so while i am saying is we are going to stick with this. the sec stated yesterday is now seeking comment on third party billing and i appreciate that. and don't they have settlements, the ftc, but that is all stuff
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that is already john and also as a mission of guilt. if you settle something, it's a mission of guilt. i'm not a lawyer. i want you to know that, but that's the way i read it. so anyway, in the near future, i plan to introduce working with colleagues from both sides of the aisle, legislation that will put a staff to this because i simply cannot find any green accents and us having to have a hearing the case and have all the ones we misrepresent you haven't had enough of this spot right. but susan eppley is just better looking than you are, and i felt. but i mean, why put her through that? and the millions of others? why put people through that? >> it doesn't make any sense. it isn't going to change the future of the nation, but it's going to change a whole lot of household functioning and
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ability to survive in truly horrible economic times, which are going to be with us for quite some time would be my guest. so i don't think we should mess around with this. let's not worry about whether something is convenience for a quarter 1% are not. let's just say if there are certain authorize things that should be done, let's work on that and figure that out and then take the rest and just ban it. pierce it with that neutral statement, this hearing is adjourned. [inaudible conversations] [inaudible conversations] [inaudible conversations] [inaudible conve3 [inaudible conversations] [inaudible conversations]
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[inaudible conversations] [inaudible conversations] [inaudible conversations] [inaudible conversations] [inaudible conversations] [inaudible conversations] [inaudible conversations]
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[inaudible conversations] [inaudible conversations] >> and are interested in what i call disappear in america. america may not be here 25 years from now. >> for 30 years, carol highsmith has documented the country through a camera lens
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>> this is the member is room here at the library of congress, a private room for senators and members who can other personal records held here at the library. just how many congressional collections are there? well, the financiers about c-span's original documentary come the library of commerce airing this monday night will to read the iconic jefferson building, including the great hall and the reading room. we will show treasury found in the rare books and special collection, including the original thomas jefferson library and presidential papers of george washington to calvin coolidge and learn how the library is using technology to
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discover hidden secrets in the collection and preserve its holdings for future generations. join us for the library of content gratis at eight eastern% back. about that question, the library holds the personal records of over 900 current and former members of congress. >> news corp. chairman and ceo, rupert murdoch testifies tuesday before british parliament committee
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>> a house homeland subcommittee held a hearing tuesday in authorization priorities for the transportation security administration. members looked at how a tsa authorization bill can improve overall transportation security and enhance the effect it has an impact the security initiatives. next, we heard from representatives of transportation industry and suggested improvements. this is two hours.omnd >> the committee on homeland security subcommittee transformation security will come to order. the committee's meeting today to hear different industry is on authorizing the transportation security administration fornist fiscalrati for fiscal years 2012 nd 213. yearke to welcome everyone here to this hearing and thank all of our witnesses for their patients. i apologize for us been called for votes when the hearing was
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supposed to start, but it is what it is. we look forward to your testimony and greatly appreciate the time and effort you put into your opening statements preparing for the hearing and i know the q&a is going to be worthwhile. the committee plans to develop a tsa authorization bill which is intended to enhance the streamline tsa transportation security initiative. a few weeks ago administrator pistol testified in front of the subcommittee to discuss his priorities, the purpose of today's hearing is to hear different industry perspectives on the ongoing challenges and securing transportation systems and what improvements could be made through the legislative process. tsa plays a critical role keeping america's travelers say, however, it is hinged on the cooperation for the public and private sector partners. we look forward to continuing this conversation hearing from some of the reverse course of public and private sector partners that tsa relies on to fulfill its mission of protecting our nation's transportation systems.
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as an example of the important collaboration between tsa and its partners has been the response to the human air cargo intact. since october, tsa is in working with private industry to develop and implement it short-term security directive to address certain vulnerabilities to read while challenges remain the open lines of communication between tsa and private industry is commendable and should be recognized as such. today's hearing is an opportunity as the partners including the rail, trucking, mass transit, pipeline and the aviation sector to voice their insight how tsa authorization bill can improve overall transportation security, enhance the effectiveness of the tsa transportation security initiative and address any efficiencies that still may exist. i look for to and open dialogue that will allow the industry partners that interact with tsa on a daily basis the ability to inform the committee and its continued development of the tsa authorization bill. the committee considered an authorization bill last congress
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as h.r. 2200 midranking member sheila jackson lee's leadership and i look forward to continuing to work with her on a bipartisan basis for this effort. with that, i now recognize the famous ranking member, sheila jackson lee for five minutes for her opening statement. >> mr. chairman, thank you. and again, let me thank you for the cooperation that we have promoted in this issue on this issue of transportation security to the witnesses here thank you very much for your presence and take note of the fact of members' schedules that were rescued from somewhat because the long list of votes and that may delay some members or cause them to have some additional scheduling concerns so let me thank you again. the chairman is right, we listen to administrator pistol and now the stakeholders the workers professionals, pilots and flight attendants are just a few of the many professionals who find it within their job description the
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response of the of securing the nation's railroads, skies and pipelines against terrorist attacks including chiefs of metropolitan rail systems. all as a front line. when we talk about security, we are talking about people and the critical question for me is our transportation workers trained and equipped to recognize and mitigate potential terrorist act. let me say just as i did in the first hearing on tsa authorization last month with administrator pistol we simply cannot forget the lessons learned from the past as we look to preventing future terrorist attacks. i think the chairman and i agree that there are many tools we happen to be unified in our support on canines. it's not present the table today. so we won't ask any questions, but what we are saying is that we need tools, professional persons used, persons who are professional who will use finding those threats that will impact the american people.
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as the congress and a nation we have taken many steps to shore up the former buddies and protocols and process sees that enabled the hijack of to penetrate the system and destroy thousands of lives. we've made great progress. we decided to move we try system that barry's security companies operating checkpoint security to its allies to system of professional screeners who can quickly adapt to threats based upon the latest intelligence to really implement mandatory screening for the czechs and the carter one passenger planes and we directed that doors be strengthened and we deployed more to secure the aircraft cabin on high-risk flights. frankly i am a supporter of increasing those air marshals on a flight internationally. however, mr. chairman, our work is not done it to the witnesses at work is not done. this year there's been five incidents where flight attendants have had to subdue a passenger to the security aircraft cabin and request to submit a list of the incidents for the record, mr. chairman.
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while these were not terrorist incidents that reveal how when portend a leader of security represent in fact all of us who fly to work as i tell my elementary school children as i visit our schools when i tell them that life like to work depend upon those frontline armored but not armored flight attendants among with our pilots once those stores are closed and the last congress when we passed a bipartisan authorization bill we've recognized this and include provisions to include the oversight of the air carrier's security programs and directed that the work with the industry to implement accessible advanced security training for flight attendants. let me be very clear the airlines need to pay for flight attendant security training and it needs to be part of their compensation package on the airline package please recognize the hands of passengers, you have the passengers in your hands. i continue to support these
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concepts and continue not to understand our position to improving aircraft cabin security as we reinforce the pile that door and provided for pilots to carry on and train. let us do something for flight attendants. but the small investment of time and training we can take the next step in the security by ensuring the crew is trained to meet today's threats and let's not forget that when we are in the air when there are no air marshals on board the flight crew that is the last line of defense. let's let them work together, air marshals and flight attendants and a bold public force. i think ten years later let us not forget the lessons learned as we look to addressing the evolving terrorist threats we in fact even have a discussion on the training on september 12th, 2001. how many lives are saved when the passengers on united flight 93 although of course they lost their lives sending it into the
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crowd in pennsylvania 585 miles per hour sacrificing themselves instead of allowing the terrorists to kill thousands more. i simply say let us not be penny wise and foolish when it comes to security. regarding mass transit and pipeline security, i have introduced h.r. 1900, the service transportation mess security act, which serves as transportation inspection office and service transportation advisory committee for stakeholder consultation on securing programs. i look forward to working with the chairman and his leadership on this issue, and i might say that h.r. 1900 also increases the number of canine teams for the transit security purposes but wherever i go, canines, but as a viable tool to be utilized in the security. let's be creative, let's move forward in training flight attendants and professionalism and using the tools that are helpful. given the threat to the transportation system as evidenced by information made public solving the demise of bin laden, we simply must bring this pay transportation efforts in line with aviation and i urge the ready to consider the bill
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and be part of the overall tsa authorization. finally mr. chairman i request a field hearing on the pipeline security and i know that we are in discussion and i think you very much for your interest and i hope that we will have one in washington as well. this is a serious matter, and it is reflected by recent incidents in montana. i believe we can work together on issues of transportation plan security of aviation and rail in all aspects it's important year from the stockholders who are here and again let me thank you very much for being part of american security and let's overcome some of our disagreements and follow-through on behalf of the american people securing the homeland. i yield back. thank you very much. >> i thank the gentlelady and would like to remind other members of the of opening statements they may be suspended for the record and at this time i would like to without objection as unanimous consent to answer to this statement from the association aircraft owners and pilots is a seizure in the air line pilots association, the
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national air carriers association chamber of commerce to the united states of america. during no objection, so ordered. we are pleased to have several distinguished witnesses -- >> if i may have a unanimous consent i would ask unanimous consent the gentleman from michigan in the full committee mr. clark be authorized for the purpose of the witnesses during the hearing today. >> so ordered. >> we have several distinguished witnesses before us and let me remind the witnesses that their entire statements will be submitted for the record. so, if you would like to summarize those we will get through the panel as quickly as possible and get to the questions. first, we have mr. tom farmer, currently serves as the assistant vp of the association of american railroads. i've enjoyed working with him during my team here and i'm proud to have you here. the floor is yours, mr. former. >> thank you very much. mr. chairman, ranking member jackson lee, members of the committee, on behalf of the association of american railroads, thank you very much for this opportunity to appear
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today. at the outset, i must emphasize that nothing is more important ilyse of their employees come safety and security of their employees, of their operations and the communities that the serve. as all of you know, the issue of the security guard attention to the significant attention. and with the reporting and al qaeda in the operation and pakistan ended with the demise of osama bin laden. with the efforts to railroad the target's knott however. indeed the extensive efforts that we as the industry have devoted to enhance since the 9/11 attacks have been promised free much of this reality. following 9/11 connect and on their own initiative, the real words made top-level security task force existing of more than 150 industry experts to conduct a thorough evaluation of risk and security and then network. the focus areas include critical infrastructure, the rail
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operations, hazardous materials, communications and control systems and military shipments. this effort produced the rail industry's risk analysis and security management plan. it is a comprehensive priority based action the industry developed to deal with new realities. this is adopted by the industry in december of 2001 within three months of the 9/11 attacks and remains the foundation of the efforts today updated on the experience and its usage and changing circumstances with the threat. the plan defines the progressively tighter security of low levels and details the actions be taken at each level and there are more than 50 per minute measures implemented as this plan. in addition, those areas the countermeasures cover focus upon its people, the effectiveness of the procedures and the technology. in addition to the regular exercise conducted with industrywide and by the industry
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railroads, we test the effectiveness of this plan on realistic terms of the provincial response scenarios. a particular area of what we do is the intelligence security information. they maintain for this purpose the transportation information sharing analysis center and the network. and these work in concert which provide effective means for timely notification of security threats come incidents and other emergencies to assure daily security awareness and expand the understanding of terrorist attacks. one of the key initiatives in these two bodies and our version of the american public association a daily brief caught the transit and intelligence awareness daily. this is a very concise overview of the most significant matters of the day in the areas of suspicious activity reporting, terrorism analyst, general security awareness and cybersecurity. the information provided by this can be used by railroads to augment channing awareness
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briefing for employees and shared with local federal authorities and partnerships. the top priority working closely with tsa and evans to the effectiveness and security and i would like to highlight this year the tenth anniversary of the 9/11 attacks the time is right for a thorough review of the security strategy programs how can we be more effective in a sustainable way? the object is agreed they set the framework for how we measure the effectiveness of our policies, programs and initiatives. tsa freed real division was credit to me for this purpose next month. second, the information sharing between the railroad and the government agencies we work with the provide a wealth of security information every day to the various government entities but we give to bill bac that helps perform the security mission effectively. we have submitted to the tsa and
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the dhs intelligence requirements to close the gap. one that is focused on, looking for in-depth analysis of the prepared reactions terrorists take and successful attacks they tried and failed attempt. looking for insight and the adversary how they function to enable better informed effective security measures. and the believe security and efficiency if there were more standardization and the tsa inspection activities especially the interpretation of the security regulations and a month field offices and from the parties set by the tsa headquarters are causing adverse but unavoidable impact on operations. we believe the tsa regional inspectors have been appointed on amtrak to offer a viable and sustainable solution to these concerns. thank you for this privilege and i'm very happy to answer any questions you may have.
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>> thank you mr. fervor for your testimony. we appreciate you being here and tell your time is valuable. i appreciate that. our second witness is martin rojas of the american trucking is this edition of the chair recognizes mr. rojas for your opening statement. >> thank you very much. chairman rogers, ranking member jackson lee and members of the committee, think for the abridged and to testify on the authorization of the transportation security administration. the trucking industry is a federal component of the economy earning more than 80% of domestic freight revenue. it's important to note the trucking industry is comprised primarily of small businesses with 97% of trucking companies operating 20 trucks or less. in addition, 18% of all u.s. communities depend solely on the trucks to deliver supply the commodities. because the trucking is a link in the economy that is critical to the government requirements, improved security without curtailing the ability to deliver america's great efficiently and safely as the
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committee is aware of the terrorist attacks of 9/11, government agencies have been planted various security initiatives impacting the transportation sector as a whole. in today's multi modal transportation system, this means a requirement on one specific mode cannon directly impact the operation. the trucking industry consider the trucks and commercial drivers operate in maritime facilities airports facilities across the nation's international borders. to mitigate the risks to future terrorist attacks and ensure both the national security and economic security with the dissent stand by the tsa assistant secretary john pistol. in early june mr. kissell testified that we must reduce the vulnerabilities in the transportation system by establishing risk-based purchase and by using sound intelligence and making decisions and carrying out our operations. the trucking industry favors such an approach. as this committee considers how to improve the security of the
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country's transportation system, we suggest the following for observations. first, mandating more security requirements does not necessarily improve the security of the transportation system. as an industry already heavily regulated by safety and security requirements, more regulations will only increase the compliance on trucking companies rather be in improve security. for multiple back rent checks and security plans to overlapping security training and in routt security, the trucking industry has always been saturated by such requirements. second, 80 day encourages improving government industry information sharing. trucking companies have embraced several initiatives by law enforcement agencies and the intelligence community to exchange and better understand the mutual information needs to improve the nation's security. today, members are involved in the various programs including the director of national intelligence, the fbi's infrared guerard program and its domestic security alliance council was always the homeland security
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information network. we believe that enhancing information sharing efforts at the federal, state inlet local level will improve the security posture of the trucking industry. third, government agencies must continue to improve coordination of the respect of security regulations. ata recognizes higher risk operating environments must address the specific risks associated with such operations. because of that during environments in which the trucking companies operate, applying a one-size-fits-all approach isn't practical for the trucking industry. however, federal agencies must improve interagency coordination to establish mechanisms that recognize the basic common requirements or protocols and other security programs. complying with multiple security requirements by various government agencies is simply not a suitable -- simply not suitable for motor carriers. last week, the ata believes that the leader roel must be finalized and the program's application process must be improved. tsa and the u.s. coast guard must finalize the tort rules and
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ensure the prophecies and the system to prevent counterfeiting and used the false identity information to obtain. ata still believes that it should function as a single security threat assessment and credential that satisfies the background check requirements of the multiple programs. in this regard i want to think again this committee, this committee's bipartisan leadership in addressing the multiplicity of backend checks and credentials. ata is a strong supporter of the modern security act of 2011 and we look forward to this bill becoming law. on behalf of ata and its members i think you for the opportunity to share some comments and i look forward to answering your questions. >> thank you. thank you for that remark. the fact is the issue was brought to the attention of the committee by your association, so i really appreciate the fact you gave us the heads up and we were able to do something about it. our next witness is ms. wanda
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speed and she's an alumni of the steam university which i graduated. she's just younger than i am. [laughter] but it's good to have her here. we look for two years in her testimony and i will tell you that a 90 member, you are going to hear about them after all the of the atlanta transit system -- >> [inaudible] >> good afternoon, mr. chairman and distinguished members and thank you for the opportunity to provide my testimony on behalf of the metropolitan atlanta transit authority in atlanta georgia and their representatives of the public transportation throughout the nation. my name is ipt dunham and i'm pleased to serve as the police chief and manager for the police services and emergency management to the ninth largest public transportation system.
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i speak to view as someone with more than 24 years of police experience and a mass transit environment and some who collaborates with in the industry as a member of the american public transit association of the committee on public safety and i truly appreciate your interest and improving the public transportation security across the country today the grant program as a federal funding program remains a significant resource and implementation and countermeasures against the terrorist threat. since 2003 we have received approximately $31 million in federal funding and support of the various target security initiatives. with the support of this investment, we've been able to develop or expand key programs such as the cctv camera system as well as acquiring 15 bomb detection k-9 teams including
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three vapor k-9 teams that can actually detect the presence of orders related to an explosive device. i would like to spend a few minutes to discuss the team's at marta. i'm pleased to report its benet for front and the use of this unique application and the detection of explosive devices we were the first transit agency to be part of the canine detection program for the tsa. we were asked to persecute and a pilot program for the first of a great canine program in the country. this program was spearheaded university protection training center in auburn alabama. our was the first graduate of this impressive training program. although it was retired last year we recognize her today for her six years of dedicated service to the department.
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while there has been a great degree and other transit systems across the country, there's still much work that is required to continue to keep the nation safe. much of the efforts and focus on this investment today has been in the area of infrastructure and target hardening. many systems are experiencing the need for additional funding and a broad funding by declines to deliver the existing capital investment with operational support and increasing the limitation on the operational funding from 10% to 20% and allowing personnel costs where the need can be strong we substantiated will be of great support to the transit systems. additionally, recent intelligence information has substantiated what we have known for some time that the transit systems remain highly vulnerable for potential tax. to that point, is highly recommended that the congress reauthorize the transit security grant program at levels similar to those authorized under the
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9/11 commission act. finally, i cannot emphasize how important and critical the financial support provided by congress through the security grant program has been to local and regional efforts across the country and keeping our customers save as we prepare of the regional level to ensure we are responsive and prepared for you and emerging 21st century security threats in support of congress and you're continued commitment to keep in stride with the financial needs of vital to our success. i will entertain any questions. thank you for your time. >> thank you. our fourth witness mr. reese for the pipeline will be testifying on behalf of the association of the oil pipelines and this recognizes mr. reese for his testimony. >> yes we have an asset going to
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the five states. after an chairman rogers, ranking member jackson lee and members of the subcommittee. i am the corporate safety and security leader of the colonial pipeline and i appreciate the opportunity to appear on the association of oil pipelines, the american petroleum institute is the chairman of the coordinating council of america relies on in america for the month to 70,000 miles of liquid pipeline to move the energy that fuels the nation's economy and supports the quality-of-life. one of them is colonial. colonial headquarters and a plant in georgia where we operate a system consisted of 5,500 miles of pipeline. when measured by the transport and colonial is the largest pipeline in the world. colonial in the pipeline industry are committed to delivering the material safely and efficiently. we are also committed to keeping the facility secure. with regard to the security of the pipeline system, private and public sector share the same goal protecting from a tax so we can avoid loss of life, disruption of service, damaged assets of injury to employees or
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the public or harms the environment and the national economy. one key element to effectively manage the risk is what tsa properly called a partnership between private and public sectors. the success of this and any part purchase dependent on communication and collaboration. in my view, the most effective security program will be one that is not static, but rather constantly adjusting to ensure we are staying ahead of a sophisticated adversary. regular interaction through a strong industry partnership provides this flexibility. tsa pipeline security division regularly conducts corporate security reviews of major pipeline operators to assess the security plans and critical facility inspections of the most sensitive locations in the pipeline industry to focus on implementation of security practices at pipeline facilities. the result of the two have been used to develop security smart practices then shared across the industry. i can personally attest to the fer nature of the review how extensive some of these businesses can be.
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it also issued pipeline security guidelines which are specific federal recommendations for the security practices throughout the pipeline industry. these were built on previous guidance and requirements and the commission act to rid our industry worked with tsa in the development of the guide lines. rarely the industry and regulators agree on every point or proposal the very nature of detective parker shook the city a little compromise as mentioned a working relationship however we believe there are opportunities for the communications elsewhere within the dhs and for the gasoline storage facilities in the program and that conclusion of the process that's gone on for a very long time contrary to the initial indications from the dhs, the regulations were expanded to include operators of gasoline storage facilities by the corporation of the mixtures provision lead in the regulatory development process to read comments were filed against were asking the dhs to review the rule making and for over two years the industry has awaited a
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formal reply. another concern is with credentials. the liquid pipeline industry and others within the oil and natural gas sector support the risk-based security standards of high risk facilities to protect critical infrastructure. we support the credential programs that check personally identifiable information against the terrorist database. we are concerned whether dhs proposal for the personal leisure the program would create significant new had been a string of burdens with little or no security enhancement. rather than creating a redundant program would appear logical for the dhs to leverage the widely accepted utilize program. i want to thank the subcommittee and its members for addressing this issue in the market as h.r. 901 and it's our hope this proposal will be part of the final reauthorization this year. in conclusion, it's been my personal experience that tsa's pipeline security division has assumed a responsible approach of pipeline security working with the industry to identify practical security practices for the pipeline operators in my view this partnership serves the
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public well. thank you for the opportunity to comment and i look forward to your questions. >> thank you reese and as i pointed out awhile ago the pipeline runs through my district, so i really like it. our third witness is the alternative -- altered legislative director for the transportation union. the chair recognizes mr. risch for members of the committee, on behalf of the -- on the united transportation union i'd like to thank you for the opportunity to address the committee today. due to leave kuwait represent thousands of trends and rail employees. each and every day members of the front line of travel to keep the transportation network secure. members are committed to work with employers and the government to improve the lines of defense against those who wish the nation harm. offer to work with the nation's railroad on the security training and had a positive discussion on possible joint
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partnerships. a primary concern to the members is the lack of blocks for doors and windows on the locomotive cabs. we believe it should be required all locomotives be quote with locks for the doors and windows to prevent unauthorized entry to the operating compartment. when windows and doors are locked the locomotive cab needs to be air-conditioned certainly in cold weather operating crews will close the windows and doors however in hot weather without air-conditioning operating they're forced to open the doors and windows compromising their personal safety and that of others. currently there is more federal standards equipping the locomotive with air-conditioning or secure locks and doors and windows and we are pleased to see the federal railroad administration is developing regulations that address the issue of air-conditioning but not on the locks and doors would like to clarify in my written statement i did mention a terrible incident happened in the new orleans last year and i've been told by the railroad involved that the callow did
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have locks in a particular locomotive did have air-conditioning. in regard to the bus the operations on the bus industry we recommend they be secured with sensing, video cameras, security personnel or a combination of all three. minibus yards on offense and many that are do not have blocked the gates. in regards to the security training for employees, we need to adequately train hundreds of thousands of transit and workers across america so that they are ready in the event of a terrorist threat or attack. the emergency situation the members of the first on the scene even before the police, firefighters and emergency medical responders and what they do in the first few minutes is crucial to minimizing destruction and loss of life. these and these need to know how to recognize the potential problem their particles follow for reporting to the threats and how to protect themselves and others from harm. the committee worked diligently to address these concerns by
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including a comprehensive training in the 9/11 commission act that legislation mandate had been all front line transit rail over the bus employees undergo the training exercises receive training on the evacuation procedures and be instruct on the crew and passenger communications and coordination. unfortunately, these mandates are nearly four years overdue. in fact, this administration failed to issue a notice of proposed rulemaking on these essentials training issues. we believe this is unacceptable and further delay on the existing dangers. our work as a locomotive engineer for 40 years on a large freight railroad and in my entire career, my security training consisted of watching a 30 minute video in a cubicle on myself. the video was well done and to report any suspicious activities how to be more aware of my surroundings. however, it wasn't tailored to my job responsibilities, and i didn't learn any specific
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skills. .. a security training should also be redundant and not the one time check the box exercise for employers. in closing, workers must be treated as partners in the battle to protect the vulnerable public transit systems and through proper training, prepared to do so. we appreciate committee's efforts to push for a meaningfu security initiattives. u we strongly urge tsa to implement training mandated in o the 9/11 act to ensure front line workers are prepared toa assist in the event of an emergency. thanks again for the opportunitt to appear.assi in even >> thank you thanks again for the opportuni
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for that >> thank you had a thing called the witnesses. i want to follow-up on that point because i met with chief done them before the hearing and she talked about the extensive training that her transit employees undergo. is that automated site that? describe which are training is for your transit security individuals. >> yes, sir. as he spoke earlier, we were talking about the fact that you have to train every employee. i think as we were talking about the airline -- the flight attendants, whoever is going to be the first person they are and so you have to train everyone, not just specialized teams of people, but she have to train everybody and we make sure everyone of our employees are trained on any active shooter. >> is it just videos? >> know, there's flight
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instruction. it's a layered approach and said there is flight instruction. there's hands-on because i think we learn from hands on this so there's a lot of participation in whatever they training is. and the good thing about it is all the training is grant funded. >> you talk about all you had was a video to watch. do you still see that occurring in any of the transportation they were talking about here today? >> well, ill may represent the bus and rail industry. it varies from railroad to ray road. from best company to the company. it's not uniform. currently there is nothing requiring the length and type of training going on. the federal railroad administration is the topi .. some legislation on standards, but they only apply to operation or rules and federal regulations see if they don't apply to security training.
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and through that process the first more comprehensive law. >> if i wanted to visit that because my interaction with the various transportation sectors has led me to believe the training is more today detailed than having people watch video. if that is prevalent, we want to know so we can work to change that fact. i want to go to mr. farmer. he talked in your opening statement about the need for intelligence sharing and you've told me that months ago on a private meeting. are you seeing any improvements? and if so, or even if not, what can we do in the reauthorization that would facilitate better communication to and from tsa to the rail industry? >> sir, we see improvement in their willingness to discuss changes in approach. we have presented our intelligence requirement to a member of tsa office of intelligence committee hs office
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of infrastructure and we've even had a chance to participate in a stakeholder outreach program at the outset director of national intelligence. but the problem as there is a lot of nodding at the head that it was a good idea, to focus on the preparatory aspects of operations, that there does not seem to be a willingness to make the necessary adjustments and priorities for anyone of those entities, but to take that on. >> that's what i'm asking. is there something in the reauthorization language that would set the framework suit have a higher degree of confidence that necessary back-and-forth of information? >> i think with the authorization i could discuss is less focused on some fundamental priorities. one of the best documents you can read in 1983 and now declassified. it's a page assigned.
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most of which you see from the federal government and the dozens to hundreds of pages. let's talk about quarter fundamental priorities. in the information sharing, there's a lot of wind shears, but often after the factory told to assist any casualties. or not getting it in our analysis. so what we're looking for is an entity. i think tsa is the best place to do this, to do the amount to become the resource for transportation related security intelligence. dhs has an excellent tool is a diagram that shows the steps of the planning cycle appeared but we've never seen a semi-breakdown in operation against lifecycle and become the ketamine fewer opportunities could have made a difference. in terms of an authorization, setting this a priority for
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parents and security professionals and railroads, tracking, to understand by knowing that we can know. it happened overseas. with that disruptive plot here. when i witkowski off of what we can know. >> excellent. my tennis up and i look forward to asking her questions. the chair now recognizes the ranking member for any question she may have. >> thank you, mr. chairman. i have so many. i ask you to help me with your answers so that i can ask all of these questions based on some very, very important testimony. the continuing theme i heard this they need training, training and access to information to help us be able to interpret the threat is around us and i thank you for that. i think it's going to be important as we move towards an authorization bill. if i might ask, mr. risch
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specifically, i have the privilege of representing houston, texas has the motto rather not answer every alliance to residential neighborhoods to near schools and a lot of facilities where people are engrossing and cake icing. some if you could create a training program for this marinade, what types of things that you focus on? me to be vigilant and watch out for twiki in a real opportunity in airport goes to the right people selection can be be taken. i think what you need is a clustered environment, when a structure is very an individual workers cannot and coworkers say canonical cars are routinely
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story. they have to be very vigilant in those areas. there'll be a host of things that security -- people trained in security know what to look for would be the appropriate lens and not so many vail road data or video to really doesn't understand the potential to. >> so many hands-on training >> correct. >> working with pipelines as millions state of texas. he had an incident that just occurred in montana and the potential for a terrorist threats against pipelines i think it's great. what specifically can we do to add to the security of pipelines, training and otherwise? 's >> i hope that is not an element. that's a great question, man. but ac going on is a lot like what i heard elsewhere if
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average is so much in such an efficient manner. i'm not necessarily opposed to video as a platform for an training. more importantly is ensuring that the instructors qualified individuals in the training actually understand the mission. i think video can be incorporated in an overall training program. the tsa chooses to just buy it be a target for law enforcement and operators, which affected because interest are slightly different enemies for information are slightly different than they both need the training. they would be dave default the public side of the house, but extended to the private site based on positions, where they are security efforts and so forth. that is helpful. there are also forums in the clearance process that allows people in ministry to have access to classified information
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in the need to know basis. >> maybe i'll come back to you, the lead me quickly ask and i appreciate that he and fair quickly ask mr. rojas, what would have been to you with the underfunding of the transportation security prayer programs. mr. rojas, could you emphasize the streamlining of twit, making it the single security document on security document on how the nessus security and mr. farmer, could you tell us how we can harmonize tsa's real security standards and expectations with the issues and concerns you have with the american religious is issuing? let me go to the chief first, please. >> yes, ma'am. that's a great question. in the state of georgia, where one of the only transit agencies do not believe any threat funding or in a cramped subsidies from the state of georgia. so grant funding is the only thing we have in order to target
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partners this time. without the funny movie last susceptible to any kind of terrorist threat. it's very important to us and that's what we really need to continue this program and get more allocations because we have considered it to one agency, which means that if an attack is likely to occur in our city. so it's definitely would need that funding. >> we thank you. mr. rojas. microphone. >> sorry. we believe it can certainly function as an excellent security threat assessment and credential for multiple facilities. as i said my comments, winter so many different kinds of facilities for maritime to railyard and mr. rees explained in his comments does not purposely done so with the time there so many areas we have to gain access to that if each one of these facilities required a separate credential in separate access card in separate background check essentially, we
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would find ourselves wearing too many credentials and having to undergo too many background checks. so i think we can write a point with a single process and single system and recognized we have to make the process better and tsa is aware of that, too. so we are very supportive of the twit content. >> yes, ma'am. the challenge of real estate because they operate across many states and in particular the class one railroads and amtrak. is that because the tsa inspectors are supervised locally that the priorities they pursue common interpretations they bring to bear can vary significantly from place to place? we've had situations where railroads are taking actions that are seen as compliant press and tsa offices in the field and yet are treated as violations by others. we believe some form of oversight from the headquarters level or through the regional security would be a way to overcome the problem.
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the last i heard at a meeting with tsa and march in fort worth as it issued 17 investigations alleging potential violations of tsa security regulations. seven of those had to be withdrawn because they simply did not state a meritorious case. it was the letter showed up the railroad, and attacking about fines measured in 10,000 for investigation. throughout the remaining time, not alleged any sort of noncompliance with subsidy security issue at hand and they were letting areas and documentation. the concern again this than the standard theory, you have a situation where 40% of the investigation are kicked out because they're simply not meritorious. or coordination between headquarters with inspection of failing headquarter priorities can bring consistency to a railroad class one freight railroad amtrak and reply in a similar interpretation of evil wherever it operates.
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>> chairman thank you. on this point, can't imagine not having consistent and start yours, which may righteously sham tries to address well-trained federal inspectors all over america when in fact these rabbits. thank you for your indulgence. >> those chair recognizes mr. cravaack for five minutes. >> real quick question. i understand that in 2008 to 2011 was gone from 175 inspectors to 318 spec is. in your opinion, do you think that is increased security of your system while at the same time he began consistencies were speaking out is because of the rapid deployment of the security force? what is your opinion? >> the rapid increase and now actually over 400 is the most recent statistic that i heard.
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the rapid increase as the force has caused a departure from office the fundamental premise of the hiring of those inspectors at the outset back in 2005, 2006. it is very much been a focus on hiring people with a real background for a transit background. one of the concerns now is they don't get people in these positions. they don't have extensive real or transit experience or bring to their familiarity with the environment that creates safety concerns us is often railroads are entities orienting inspectors to dangers that the environment. more importantly, lack of familiarity with real generally does create a situation where the source of income distances become more likely, especially if there seems to be a disconnect between what priorities are set up at the headquarters of like if executed in the field. >> mr. rojas, do you feel the same way?
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>> the issue for us has to do with obviously with a much larger population attract companies out in the field with about 600,000 trucking companies registered with the u.s. department of transportation for interstate commerce in another 500,000 intrastate commerce. so we need to have some level of harmony nation in that area. i think it would be important because we've had some issues where inspect or so, up, some of the viper teams asking truck drivers if they actually have a twit, for example. and for no specific reason. they might not be near a port. so we have some issues in this area and we certainly look forward to working with tsa and the committee on this issue. >> c. probably take the training of inspectors themselves is the issue. >> welcome the problem is
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detailed with different law enforcement agencies. if you think about the commercial inspectors or state vehicles. we obviously deal with different -- different highway agencies. there is because there in dealing with too many law enforcement people that there is a sense that it's a bit overwhelming for the drivers and how many my law-enforcement agencies have to deal with. so if one more inspector asking for yet another credential for training component or something like that gets a little overwhelming for the truck drivers. >> why they get their free time. >> that's correct. >> could you explain, man. >> one thing to keep in mind is that the increase in security expect terrorist is not being more security. i think people get confused by that. they are kind of an oversized and sometimes it is a little bit match for them to come in like
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mr. rojas said. yet another inspector coming in. i need her boots on the ground. i need my people in the field. >> thank you, man. mr. reese, would you care to comment, sir? >> i would echo mr. ross comments. but enough is a standardization issue is the collective inspect yours interpret the rates of family, approach work the same way can you get a more consistent application of the inspection process and i'll hold it there. >> thank you, sir. mr. farmer, and very lucky to have international falls is a district which is a rare point for border security. anytime a little but the tsa at a point such as that which has a lot of real growth. and if you could expand upon that a little bit. >> in areas like the inspections and from two dhs components and
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inspectors looking too many issues involving various actions the overseer regulations particularly pertaining to transport of hazardous material and also potential interest in customs and border protection looking at the issues there is commerce goes back and forth across the border. the railroad spend an awful lot of time and effort and cooperation with the cbp and tsa in this area are particularly with customs and border protection, their joint working groups that focus specifically on enhancing cross-border security across border in the north importer of canadian national and canadian associate. each of those has their own rail. police departments with the traffic crosses the border and goes to the customs border protection check point. there isn't a screening system that evaluates those cars to look for any indications of contraband. so it is a good, collected an extensive effort for a
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significant is paid both by the rail industry and the government to church to mitigate it minimize the use as a means to give something to listen in to the >> this error great teams that they are. with on the, sir, i really hope that. >> i thank the gentleman. the chair now recognizes mr. clerk read. all right, we'll go back to the chairman. one of the games that i wanted to give it and i talked with most of you about this privately is do you see any rules and regulations still hanging out there that really need to be pruned back that are no longer relevant or applicable or duplicative? let's start with mr. rojas on that. >> thank you, mr. chairman. i think the obama administration issued executive order 13563 in relation to the very issue of overlapping regulations we certainly see many comments.
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for us the major one -- the first one is credentialing as you well know. some other issues we've been dealing with for the two some of the validation processes a the audits or visits from multiple agencies do sometimes. i know tsa has been developing security and u.s. transportation has been doing compliance reviews. it seems to us there should be an ability to coordinate to what the results of each one are so we don't get multiple visits per se. at the same time, many carriers are members of the customs trade partnership against terrorism and have undergone valuations. the number of programs out there assertion be a concern to her industry in that sense. >> thank you. mr. farmer. >> in the area security, one of the challenges you run into this overlap at times between
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regulation maintained by the department of transportation and is subsequently put in place by tsa were to be put in place by tsa. it was referenced earlier to the rulemaking under the 9/11 act for training and one pertains to security plans. weak, specifically with tsa, the predominant regulation has the fact time the railroads is 1580 and focuses on reporting security concerns, please been a security coordinator, particularly with requirements pertaining to the transport of toxic inhalation material. we too believe that those regulate now in effect for a couple of years the process to develop and start five plus years ago that there's an opportunity to look at some of the specific processes under the rules to determine what is necessary at this point. in the media and party existing the department of transportation
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and to preparedness training, tsa looks to regulate in that area, support you harmonize that for that one agency takes the field so you have one set of requirements that pertain. dhs, as mr. rojas pointed out his acted upon the executive order calling for review. one concern we have is the document for the photo registers seem to indicate the focus of the review revealed the interviews that were five years old and more. but dhs it has not been in existence, and particularly any regulations put out within the past five years. in a sense they've taken out at the table. it would take a broader look at at that action on the president's executive order and regulations as they exist and also look at one's that have been mandated for their necessity at this point. >> this'll be for mr. farmer and chief done them. currently tsa a separate houses for rate frail and mass transit.
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do you participate this or not? chief done in. >> idea. i do support it because we do totally different things in our challenges are totally different, so i do support having two different structures. >> how about you, mr. farmer? >> sert county split between free rail and mass transit of sound. we can rent difficulties in coordination however the passenger bit of a spirit free passengers operate in the same infrastructures was important within government to avoid there doing collectively for security and often because they're in the same routes. that is two things that participate in basir said. some should be for the grant program says the committee is so instrumental in making have been as benefits that accrue to fragrant and recipients. in the aar, we have formed a joint committee, a passenger --
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for a passenger committee specifically to ensure from a security as well as operations and safety working while a concert together. we would ask when tsa considers matters pertaining to wrote that they look from integrated approach that these are not separate channels, but there is much common synergy that can be gained in freight rail security. >> my last question is for chief done him. your system is literally a living system security fund. i feel strongly about your closed-circuit cameras and how far you've come up those simply and of course canines, which is my pet issue, but i would like for you to speak briefly on how the teams fit into your operations. >> we are very fortunate in atlanta to have a really good working relationship under the federal air marshals program. the teams are great resource for
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us because we don't have extra resources. you can call the viper team fan. they are acclimated to the rail environment and so they come in, especially for special events, large-scale event. they come in and blend into our environment. outcome of this extra added resource for us. we've been fortunate on the great working relationship. >> thank you. the thought of the. the ranking members recognize for five minutes for additional questions. >> thank you very much. you have reason very important issues on how we can make or inspect various really focus in on the word that would secure the railroads. so i raised it to a question of your support for the establishment of the inspector office at tsa, which would improve oversight and training
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and give greater attention to surface programs. the provision is in h.r. 1900. >> interesting enough, i worked at tsa when the program started. and right at the outset it was very much coordinated from that level, which did enable substantial progress in some key areas to take place. in particular, the arrangements between the railroads and transit agencies on security action items thand rail communities to have inspectors come in and evaluate those. in both areas in great rail and mass transit and passenger rail comes substantial value accrued from that coordinated effort driven by a well-defined priority, says in action items and producing the court to prove value by tsa in developing programs into railroads, passenger and freight in looking at how well they were doing and
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being were opportunities for improvement they exist. i referenced earlier specifically appointed to achieve a purpose to your preference should bring the oversight, to bring the consistency. in fact, the letters that appoint them are very expressive and how the railroad should be willing in april and frequently take advantage of this physician. it seems than the actual implementation of the suspect there's have not been able to do the job in the way that the letters indicated they would. they are not even actually the organizational structure or inspectors in the field. so some approach.brings back a marionette priorities for field in fact yours with the policies being set between mobile divisions and mass transit finish ends with representative industry, railroad officials,
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transit officials, people in my possession. so whatever approach can get us back to the marionette priorities between headquarters and activities in the fields is one that would be beneficial across the board. >> content at the inspector service officer be just that and also to focus on the security side of an inspection, it hangs that would prevent harm from coming to the railroad processes in their business. certainly it's important to look at paperwork, the resources in the transportation security administration should be focused on what is there that is threatening that facility. would you agree to that? .. after many of those cases, when they inspect your nose at the appropriate chain of custody and
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secure handoff occurred and yet makes an issue, a significant issue of the documentation, that's a distraction. taking us away from those fundamental priorities that should be driven our program. >> we want to make sure we comply with programs. we need to find a way to ramp up one aspect of the second aspect can watch his paperwork and he transferred it but find a way to handle that in a manner that doesn't interfere with the serious work of securing that area. thank you for that and mr. reese let me pursue the question on pipelines. we know that pipelines systems are highly automated and therefore we are hoping that there is technology as the most sophisticated kind that is now being used. so i would appreciate you speaking to the latest security technology that may be used on private lines and what disi